Email updates

Keep up to date with the latest news and content from Diagnostic Pathology and BioMed Central.

Open Access Open Badges Research

HIV-1 drug resistance genotyping from antiretroviral therapy (ART) naïve and first-line treatment failures in Djiboutian patients

Aden Elmi Abar12*, Asma Jlizi2, Houssein Youssouf Darar3, MohamedAliBenHadj Kacem2 and Amine Slim2

Author Affiliations

1 Laboratoire de la Caisse Nationale de Sécurité Sociale, Djibouti, Republic of Djibouti

2 Laboratoire de Microbiologie, CHU Charles Nicolle, Tunis, Tunisie

3 Service des Maladies Infectieuses de l’Hôpital Général Peltier, Djibouti, Republic of Djibouti

For all author emails, please log on.

Diagnostic Pathology 2012, 7:138  doi:10.1186/1746-1596-7-138

Published: 8 October 2012


In this study we report the prevalence of antiretroviral drug resistant HIV-1 genotypes of virus isolated from Djiboutian patients who failed first-line antiretroviral therapy (ART) and from ART naïve patients.

A total of 35 blood samples from 16 patients who showed first-line ART failure (>1000 viral genome copies/ml) and 19 ART-naïve patients were collected in Djibouti from October 2009 to December 2009. Both the protease (PR) and reverse transcriptase (RT) genes were amplified and sequenced using National Agency for AIDS Research (ANRS) protocols. The Stanford HIV database algorithm was used for interpretation of resistance data and genotyping.

Among the 16 patients with first-line ART failure, nine (56.2%) showed reverse transcriptase inhibitor-resistant HIV-1 strains: two (12.5%) were resistant to nucleoside (NRTI), one (6.25%) to non-nucleoside (NNRTI) reverse transcriptase inhibitors, and six (37.5%) to both. Analysis of the DNA sequencing data indicated that the most common mutations conferring drug resistance were M184V (38%) for NRTI and K103N (25%) for NNRTI. Only NRTI primary mutations K101Q, K103N and the PI minor mutation L10V were found in ART naïve individuals. No protease inhibitor resistant strains were detected. In our study, we found no detectable resistance in ∼ 44% of all patients who experienced therapeutic failure which was explained by low compliance, co-infection with tuberculosis and malnutrition. Genotyping revealed that 65.7% of samples were infected with subtype C, 20% with CRF02_AG, 8.5% with B, 2.9% with CRF02_AG/C and 2.9% with K/C.

The results of this first study about drug resistance mutations in first-line ART failures show the importance of performing drug resistance mutation test which guides the choice of a second-line regimen. This will improve the management of HIV-infected Djiboutian patients.

The virtual slide(s) for this article can be found here: webcite

HIV-1 drug resistance; First-line antiretroviral therapy failure; Antiretroviral naive; Djibouti; Virological failure